Each A Plant, 20 March 2018
Most people want to keep items with sentimental value, even for flowers. To preserve your beautiful blooms and the special memories they hold, try flower pressing. Fresh flowers can be kept for years with their colours intact by pressing them.
There are many methods to press flowers but the most popular and probably simplest is to press flowers in a book. To start off, find a heavy book. Dictionaries, phone books and encyclopaedias are excellent choices for pressing flowers. The moisture absorbed from the flowers will cause the pages to wrinkle, so use a book you do not mind damaging.
Place the flowers between two pieces of paper, and place them within the pages of the book. You may use parchment paper or just printing paper will do as great. Choose the flowers to lay flat or arrange artistically.
Depending on the size of the book, you can place multiple flowers at different parts of the book. Just note to leave about 2 cm between the pages to avoid moisture being transferred between flowers which will cause mold. Pile more books on top of the pressing book to weigh it down once it is closed. Leave it undisturbed for about 2-3 weeks until the flowers are completely dry.
Gently open the layers of paper and remove the flowers, preferably with a pair of tweezers. Properly pressed flowers should feel papery and is great to make floral art.
Microwave presses are readily available for purchase. Or you can simply make one yourself. Press the flowers between two ceramic tiles held together with rubber bands. You can microwave a book flower press, only if you are sure there are no metal parts (e.g. staples which hold the book together).
When using homemade ceramic tile press, line each side of the tile with a piece of cardboard and a piece of paper (e.g. printing paper). Place the flower in the middle and secure firmly with two rubber bands. Microwave the flower press using low temperature. Heat for 30 to 60 seconds at a time, allowing cooling intervals between each heat cycle.
When the flowers are dry, complete the process by using a book press method (press for 2-3days) to give the flowers a fix setting.
If you do not wish to wait weeks to get your flower press, consider using an iron. Begin by pressing the flowers between two absorbent pieces of papers, and then flatten with a heavy book. Empty water from the iron as you do not want to add moisture to the flowers with steam.
Heat the iron with low temperature setting. Press the warm iron on top of the upper sheet of paper for 10 to 15 seconds. You do not need to make gliding motion the way you would when ironing clothing. Lift the iron for the paper to cool for 15 seconds and then repeat heating process until the flowers are stiff and dry.
Whether you grew flowers yourself or received them for a special occasion, you can preserve their sentimental value for years to come with any of these pressing methods. If you wish to get pressed flowers display for your loved ones, check out our wide selection of gift choices today!